Tennessee Student Speaks Out About Common Core (Video)

While attention is on the debacle that is Obamacare, there is another even more disturbing comprehensive government program being implemented called “Common Core” a set of educational guidelines that were never voted on by Congress, the Department of Education nor by local or state governments.

This federal takeover of public education redefines reading and math standards, teaching and testing for K-12 schooling. According to a report from the American Enterprise Institute (AEI):

The sweeping bold national effort was introduced in 2010 and adopted by more than 40 states with little notice, Common Core has since rocketed into the popular imagination. Headlines are now filled with tales of angry public meetings and legislative clashes in places like Florida, New York and Georgia. This discord may surprise some. The Common Core is the very reform that the New York Times editorial board celebrated as “a once-in-a-generation opportunity,” and which U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said “may prove to be the single greatest thing to happen to public education in America since Brown versus Board of Education.”

But challenges with implementation are making the Common Core look more and more like Obamacare. States like Georgia, Florida, Alabama and Oklahoma that were eager to adopt the standards in 2010 are now having second thoughts. The AEI reports even the president of the American Federation of Teachers admitted the implementation of the Common Core is “far worse” than the launch of Obamacare – and that’s saying something.

Kentucky College-Bound Students Face Federal Blackmail (Petition Link)

The SAT college-entrance exam is becoming a “Common Core exam.”

That means Kentucky high schoolers and their parents have become pawns in a massive BLACKMAIL scheme to force Common Core on all of America’s schools — regardless of whether your state adopts the testing standards or not!

Here’s the full story …

The Atlantic reports that David Coleman, president of The College Board, which developed the SAT, says that college examinations have “become disconnected from the work of our high schools.”

It’s interesting to point out that Coleman became president of the College Board in 2012, after he reportedly played “a vital role” in the development of
(wait for it) … the Common Core!

+ + Take The “Carrot” … Or Else!

The “carrot” of receiving federal funds for adopting Common Core standards is now accompanied by a “gun” that’s being held to the heads of state lawmakers, school administrators and parents.

It’s as if the federal government and “progressives” are telling anyone opposed to Common Core: “Walk away and your children may not gain admission into the college or university of their choice.”

This is especially unnerving considering that the SAT and ACT currently are being rewritten to “connect with the Common Core.”

Don’t let Obama and his progressive minions — including Coleman and others — “blackmail” you into handing over the mind of your child or grandchild. Stand with tens of thousands of grassroots Americans who are fighting back.

Join the nearly 40,000 concerned citizens who have added their names to the national “Stop Common Core” petition by going here now:


+ + Nearly 40,000 Signatures Strong … And Building

As word spreads about this Obama-administration effort to control the minds of our children, thousands are signing every day. But we need your help to keep building grassroots momentum!

After adding your name to the “Stop Common Core” petition, take a moment to forward this message to your friends and family. Urge fellow patriots to go here to stand with you by signing the national “Stop Common Core” petition:


Thanks, in advance, for the stand you’re taking.

Utah Father’s Compelling Letter in Opposition of Common Core Standards

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Letter Re: My Concerns With Common Core

 Garrett Hall

Dear Governor Herbert, Utah State School Board, State Superintendent Menlove, Attorney General Swallow, State Legislators, Local School Boards, et al.:

As an involved parent, I am extremely concerned about the work my children are bringing home as a result of the Utah Common Core State Standards (“CCSS”). Below you will find some of my concerns.

First, my children are NOT merely bricks in a wall. They are unique and wonderful children! They have different strengths and weaknesses. My daughter – like her lawyer father – is more geared towards language, words, reading and logic. My son – like his college-educated mother – is more gifted in mathematics and science. My third son is a healthy mixture of the two. My daughter prefers to learn through practical examples and illustrations while my six year-old son likes to learn through straightforward facts and numbers. We cannot successfully parent and teach each of them the same way, so how do you propose that CCSS can successful teach them and their unique classmates in the exact same manner?

Second, my children are overwhelmed with the amount of busy homework they have to complete when they get home from school. To begin with, the kids are awake from about 8:00 am to 9:00 pm. Of those 13 waking hours they are at school from 9:00 to 4:00. Then when they get home, they read for 25 minutes and take about 27 minutes to complete homework – and they are in 1st and 3rd grade! I’ll make this really simple using the “Lattice Method”: there are 60 minutes in one hour and the kids are awake for 13 hours, so they are awake for 3×0 + 3×6 + 0×1 + 6×1 / / / hours. They spend 0×7 + 7×7 + 0×0 + 7×0 / / / at school. Then, they spend 25 + (27 + 3 = 30) = 45 – 3 = 42 minutes doing homework. That only leaves 780 (+20 to round to 800) minutes minus 420 (subtract 20 to round to 400) minus 42 (subtract 2 to round to 40) minutes to spend with their family and to just be kids and learn on their own. Yeah, that’s 800 – 400 = 400 minus 20 = 380 minus 20 = 360 minus 42 homework minutes (subtract 2 to round to 40) equals 320 minus 2 to get to 318 free minutes. It would be one thing if the homework stimulated their brains or if the work was preparing them for the real world, but it is full of mindless estimations and backward mathematical methods.

Third [I will give you 30 seconds to read this paragraph. If you do not read it in 30 seconds, you are not up to MY standards], there is an over-utilization of timed reading in the curriculum.  When I was in elementary school, I learned to read and comprehend what I was reading. I don’t know how many words I could read in a minute at each level, but I learned to read at a comfortable pace, while absorbing the material I was reading. Is there some time-sensitive aspect of the “global economy” that I don’t understand? I have lived in Southeast Asia and all over the United States, I have completed 20 years of education and have passed a Bar exam; I do not remember ever benefiting from being able to read something at the fastest pace possible with there being no inherent penalties/drawbacks for lack of comprehension. Why is this so important to state standards? You may have read this paragraph in 30 seconds, but did you comprehend it? It matters.

Fourth, as I mentioned above, I have lived in Asia and I have witnessed the school systems there. The students are generally disciplined and complete their work. The work usually requires almost exclusively memorization and regurgitation. I often hear that the Asian education system is so wonderful and America is way behind in education because the kids in Asia score well on tests, but I don’t see a lot of innovation coming from those countries. Sure, they build iPhones and iPads efficiently and they produce many great products, but I don’t recall many breakthroughs coming from Asia. Am I wrong? They are good at following instructions and reproducing results, but I have found a huge inability to think outside the box, to interpret unique data, and to understand context. Many of them (generally) are followers, but not thinkers. It’s almost as if you are trying to create a generation of followers and not thinkers…

Fifth, I have an assignment for you. Assume that the Constitution of the United States is outdated and needs to be changed (that shouldn’t be too hard for some of you). You – a Federal government agency – want to develop a one-size-fits-all education system for the entire Nation, but the Constitution does not specifically grant that right to your agency. What would you add or take away from the Constitution in order to make this new standard system of education constitutional? You will need to prioritize, prune and add text to turn your system into a constitutionally acceptable form of education. Then, propose a plan for how to get States to go along with your education program. Money is not an issue; you can promise them as much money as it takes, but you must get them signed up. Your proposal will be submitted in its final form as a persuasive presentation to the American people. They have been given the important individual charge – by their Creator – to educate their own children and, having partially delegated that responsibility to local school districts, will judge your proposal based on the validity and veracity of your arguments as to whether you have any right and/or ability to educate their children in the manner proposed. Your score will not be shared with you. We will keep your proposal in our database for future reference.

Sixth, suppose you are the Governor of Utah and in your 2012 gubernatorial election you received 624,678 votes, or 68.4%. Further suppose that during the Republican convention, you received 2,253 votes, or 57.67%. Now suppose that since your election your supporters, who oppose Common Core at the federal and state level, discover that you support Common Core at one or both of those levels. Suppose that these supporters are very serious about the education of their children and do not approve of their elected leaders supporting such a massive, radical form of standardized education. If (let’s put our estimation hats on) half of those supporters become former supporters and choose to vote for one of your Republican challengers instead of you, how many people would still support you in the convention and, if you survive the convention, how many Utahans would turn out to vote for you in the next election? The number is not important. The WHY is everything. As long as you understand WHY, maybe, just maybe you will survive in the Utah – not global – economy.

Thank you for your time and attention to our concerns. As parents of OUR children, my wife and I have the ultimate responsibility for educating OUR children and preparing them for the future. We take OUR responsibility very seriously. You, as public “servants,” work for US. If you do not serve the good of OUR children, we will relieve you of your post or we will remove our children from your collective, destructive influence.

Your Bosses,
The Halls

Source: http://lawdawghall.blogspot.com/2013/10/my-concerns-with-common-core.html


Georgia has now joined the states of Alabama, Utah, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania in withdrawing from the national Common Core tests. With this latest state withdrawal, the program appears to be in danger of unraveling.


According to Politico, now that the new math and language tests that are tied to the Common Core national academic standards are almost ready, state officials have found that the exams are too long, too expensive, and require a higher level of computer technology than is often available. Perhaps first and foremost, however, states are fighting back against the standards as a federal intrusion into an area that has historically been reserved for them.

“There are going to be lots and lots of forces pulling states away from these assessments,” said Andy Smarick, an education analyst with Bellwether Education Partners. “It doesn’t look good.”

In addition, the House has just passed the Student Success Act (SSA), a proposal sponsored by GOP Reps. John Kline (MN) and Todd Rokita (IN), to rewrite the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law.

The Heritage Foundation reports that the SSA would eliminate the federal mandate known as Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) for reading and math proficiency, and thereby allow states to design their own accountability systems.

The SSA would also eliminate the Highly Qualified Teacher (HQT) federal mandate, a burdensome and ineffective regulation requiring teachers of core subjects to be state certified and have a bachelor’s degree. With research indicating that teacher impact on student achievement is not affected by whether a teacher is traditionally or alternatively certified – or even uncertified – the SSA again returns this decision to state and local educational leaders.

Very pertinent to the Common Core standards, the SSA would also remove maintenance-of-effort regulations that require states to spend money in order to obtain the associated federal funding.

According to the Heritage Foundation, the SSA:

…includes strong language clearly delineating that standards and assessments are not to be dictated by the U.S. Secretary of Education—important at a time when the Obama Administration has been pushing states to adopt Common Core national standards and tests. An amendment by Representative Blaine Luetkemeyer (R–MO) further strengthened that provision, providing a “sense of Congress” that “states and local educational agencies should maintain the rights and responsibilities of determining educational curriculum, programs of instruction, and assessments for elementary and secondary education.”

As Heritage notes, however, while the SSA could reduce federal red tape in schools, ultimately conservatives hope to substantially limit federal intervention in education. Admittedly, a “fix” to NCLB doesn’t hold a candle to allowing states to completely opt out of the federal program in order to spend their dollars on their most urgent educational needs.

Nevertheless, the push-back against federal intervention into education could undercut the goal of the Obama administration to set the same proficiency standards across the nation.

In fact, Heartlander Magazine indicates that if three more states withdraw from Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC), one of the two federally funded national testing consortia that are creating Common Core tests, the group’s $186 million federal grant will be in jeopardy.

Once PARCC released its new cost estimate of $29.50 per student for math and language testing, Georgia announced its withdrawal. Georgia’s current testing costs $8 to $9 per student, and it assesses five subject areas.

PARCC now has 18 member states, while Smarter Balanced, the other consortium, has 24.

source: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/07/24/Common-Core-In-Jeopardy-As-More-States-Withdraw

Utah withdraws from Common Core consortium



utahSALT LAKE CITY — The Utah State Board of Education voted Friday to end the state’s membership in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, or SBAC.

Utah’s involvement in the consortium — one of two that were formed to begin the process of drafting assessments for the Common Core State Standards — had drawn criticism from groups that oppose the core standards. They worried Utah would be tied to assessment materials developed out of state.

According to officials, the state will soon issue a request for proposals from companies interested in working with Utah to provide assessments for mathematics and English language arts. The state will continue implementing the Common Core standards, but the decision to end Utah’s membership with SBAC was made to avoid a conflict of interest with testing materials.

The Common Core State Standards are a set of achievement benchmarks. They are voluntarily adopted, with the goal of improving college- and career-readiness among students as well as establishing a degree of educational consistency between states.

— Benjamin Wood


source: http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865560088/Utah-withdraws-from-Common-Core-consortium.html?pg=all

Clash over Common Core: Opposition grows as national education standards approach



Erika Russell, a mother of four from Maine, had no intention of embroiling herself in the fight over Common Core.

As she put it, “I sent my kids to public school, so I wouldn’t have to worry about what they’re learning.”

Then her then-9-year-old, second-grade daughter returned home from school one day in January of 2012 with a frown.

“She asked me, ‘Mom, Can you home school me?’ I said, ‘What about your friends?’ and she just told me she would see them at sports. Then, I knew something was wrong and I should start looking into this.”

Over the next 18 months, the 36-year-old Russell, who resides in Sidney in the central part of the state, helped found “No Common Core Maine,” a coalition of concerned parents, educators and activists– and one of a growing number of organizations nationwide who have made it their mission to stop Common Core’s implementation.

“My kid was honestly concerned, and I thought if a second-grader was concerned, maybe I should start paying attention. And you know what? The more I looked into it, like all things that are sinister, it’s packed in a nice, little box with a pretty little bow on top, but once you untie the bow, and start unpacking these so-called federal educational standards, you realize it’s all a pack of a lies.”


“There’s a huge fear over this, and I don’t think they thought about these kids when crafting these standards.”

- Gretchen Logue, mother of a hearing impaired student


What Education Secretary Arne Duncan hailed in 2010 as a “quiet revolution” in American education has metastasized into a full-blown battle now being waged in Congress and state houses and at school board meetings, rallies and classrooms around the country.

So far, some 46 states have adopted Common Core State Standards Initiative – a federally-backed set of educational standards promoted, in part, through the promise of millions of dollars in so-called “Race to the Top” grants to those states willing to accept them. Altogether, the standards seek to ensure students throughout the nation are learning the same things, at the same pace. The plan was devised in 2007 by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, and has been enthusiastically embraced by the Obama administration.

“The Common Core State Standards provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them,” states the initiative’s website. “The standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers. With American students fully prepared for the future, our communities will be best positioned to compete successfully in the global economy.”

Beginning in 2014, students in grades 3-8 an in either 10th or 11th grade will take standardized tests to determine their proficiency in Math and English Language Arts.

As full implementation approaches and more parents and lawmakers learn what the program entails, opposition has swelled. Alaska, Nebraska, Virginia and Texas all declined to adopt the standards. Several other states, including Indiana and Michigan, initially signed on only to drop out under public or legislative pressure. Lawmakers in Alabama, Georgia, Maine and South Dakota are all pressing their states to either drop out completely or at least dial back their involvement with the standards, in some cases by not administering the tests.

In Maine, Erick Bennett of the Maine Equal Rights Center told FoxNews.com he is now awaiting the arrival of petitions from local printers he says will almost assuredly convey the 57,277 signatures required to place an anti-Common Core referendum on his state’s November 2014 ballot – what is expected to be the first of several such popular votes, nationwide, in response to the uniform, federal educational standards.

“We held a well-attended press conference Aug. 21 outside the governor’s office in Augusta to kick off this campaign,” he said. “I’m now setting up a series of town hall meetings across the state and a schedule of press releases. At this time, it’s a matter of public relations and getting the word out.”

In Alabama, the State Legislature in 2012 passed a resolution calling for the state Board of Education to repeal already-adopted Common Core standards, and as late as last month, two public forums on the topic – held in Birmingham and Huntsville – drew a combined crowd easily in excess of 1,200 people.

“The meetings were held on Friday and Saturday nights with little advertising, and I’ll tell you that people came away very motivated,” State School Board member Stephanie Bell told FoxNews.com. “People were concerned. They’re just finding out about Common Core and they’re unhappy about what is happening in their children’s classrooms.”

Dozens of websites like “Floridians Against Common Core,” “Idahoans for Local Education,” and “Keep Education Local,” – to name just a few – have sprung up, seemingly overnight, to join the fight. And Facebook – and social media, at large – has become an active front, as well, with groups claiming wacky names like, “Badass Parents Association” and “Badass Teachers Association” documenting each-and-every lurch in adoption of Common Core standards, nationwide.

“This is the hottest issue at the grassroots level in America today,” Phyllis Schlafly, president of the Alton, Ill., -based conservative think take Eagle Forum, told FoxNews.com. “And I describe it as just coming out of the woodwork. All of a sudden, there are meetings and rallies around the nation of concerned parents, moms and dads. They are seeing de facto federal control of what their kids are going to learn and not learn in the classroom, and they don’t like it.”

Betty Peters, Bell’s colleague on the Alabama State Board of Education, who twice voted against adoption of Common Core, was among the first to take to the Internet in opposition of the standards.

“It’s an old-fashioned, grassroots movement,” Peters told FoxNews.com. “From the beginning, and I was not unique in coming to this conclusion, Common Core is not about educational standards.

“It’s like a magician: In the right hand, he’s holding these sparkling uniform standards that will purportedly level the playing field. But in his left hand and behind his back, he’s holding the other components of this total education initiative. If it were simply standards, it would just be unconstitutional, but not horrible. But it’s so much more, and it’s the so much more that is truly horrible.”

Gretchen Logue, the 55-year-old, St. Louis mother of a hearing impaired student, started the blog, “Missouri Education Watchdog,” three years ago, and then in 2012 co-founded, “The Missouri Coalition against Common Core.” She says there is great uncertainty over whether Common Core will make the same provisions for learning disabled students as currently in-place standards.

“There are a lot of children who aren’t common, who have special needs or who are gifted, or both. And Common Core raised a lot of red flags for me,” she told FoxNews.com. “There’s a huge fear over this, and I don’t think they thought about these kids when crafting these standards.

Added Logue: “If you look at a deaf child, their language development traditionally lags that of a typical child’s. And you had to adapt. Now, with Common Core, these kids might have to adapt to the standards. Who knows! It’s like a black-hole, and there are no specifics and it’s a huge concern for parents of special-needs kids. How in the world are you going to have common, uniform standards that will address the needs of such a varied population of students.”

In the months following Russell’s strange exchange with her then-9-year-old second-grader, she says she removed three of her four children – one now attends college – out of public schools in favor of a local, private Christian academy. She told FoxNews.com Common Core – and what she says is its purportedly hidden agenda- motivated her to do so.

“It’s a violation of privacy,” she said, echoing both Bell and Peters’ concerns. “The government will tell you there is no central database that is part-and-parcel of Common Core, but that’s an outright lie. They’re tracking over 400 data points, from parents’ political and religious affiliations to how much money they make, what the child eats, behaviors and attitudes toward sex…everything. It’s Orwellian. I had my eyes closed to this and I didn’t believe any of it until I saw for myself.”

Russell says she is now barnstorming her state – and notably local school board meetings – with fellow No Common Core Maine members to educate parents, teachers and school administrators on Common Core issues.

“I’m not a conspiracy theorist and I’m not some crazed woman,” she added. “But we’re leading our kids right into communism.

“You have them choosing their career path by middle school and you have standards that every child is going to learn the same thing the exact, same way, no matter who they are as individuals, or what they bring in terms of ability. Children are not common. People are not common. They are unique. And that’s not what Common Core is about.”


source: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/09/06/clash-over-common-core-opposition-grows-as-national-education-standards/

Rick Scott Announces Withdrawal from Key Component of Common Core

Rick Scott Announces Withdrawal from Key Component of Common Core

Rick Scott for Florida, Rick Scott for Governor

By: James Taylor | September 23, 2013

Florida Gov. Rick Scott announced today that he will ask Florida Education Commissioner Pam Stewart to withdraw the state from participating in a national student testing program, known as PARCC, that is a key component of the controversial Common Core national education standards. “We listened to many people who are passionate about making Florida’s education system the best in the world during our Education Summit in Tampa a few weeks ago,” Scott explained in a press release this morning. “The summit’s discussions were so robust and diverse that they have led to three actions today. First, I sent a letter to Chairman Chartrand outlining a six-step course forward for Florida to ensure we continue to hold our students to high education standards. Excellence in education begins with high expectations for our students. Second, I told the federal government we are rejecting their overreach into our state education system by withdrawing from PARCC. Last, I issued an executive order to address state assessments, ensure student data security and support a transparent and understandable school accountability system. “While the debate surrounding Common Core Standards has become polarized into a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ discussion, we heard during the Education Summit that most education leaders agreed on two things,” Scott added. “We agree that we should say ‘yes’ to high standards for Florida students and ‘no’ to the federal government’s overreach into our education system. Therefore, I notified the federal government that Florida would be withdrawing from PARCC, and at the same time we will hold public comment sessions to receive input on any alterations that should be made to the current Common Core Standards. We are committed to maintaining high standards for our students. Period. The six steps outlined to the Board of Education will help Florida move forward in maintaining exceptionally high standards while removing federal intrusion into our education system.” Scott’s announcement stunned Common Core supporters and vindicated Florida Rep. Debbie Mayfield, who fought back Friday against proposed Common Core federal education standards championed by the state’s establishment Republicans and the liberal League of Women Voters of Florida. In an article published in Sunshine State News, Mayfield noted Florida would cede a significant portion of its educational authority by joining Common Core. Mayfield argued this abdication of authority is important considering a recent Thomas B. Fordham Institute study finding the Common Core standards are inferior to Florida’s current Next Generation Sunshine State Standards. According to the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, as quoted by Mayfield, “Florida’s standards are exceptionally clear and well-presented and they are easier to read and follow than Common Core. Standards are briefly stated and further clarified with the use of additional remarks/examples that explicate the content expectations so the reader knows exactly what is expected. In addition, the high school content is organized so that the standards dealing with specific topics, such as quadratic functions, are grouped together in a mathematically coherent way. The organization of the Common Core is more difficult to navigate …” “Because Florida’s Sunshine State Standards for education already nearly meet or exceed those proposed in Common Core, I see no benefit [from] inviting more Washington involvement in the education of our kids,” Mayfield explained. “Given Washington’s track record, our children are better off without them.” Mayfield filed a bill last month that would make it more difficult for state officials to abandon Florida-specific education standards in favor of Common Core. Liberal activist groups are championing the Common Core standards. The League of Women Voters of Florida, which has frequently championed liberal political causes in recent weeks, issued a press statement titled, “League of Women Voters of Florida Urges Swift Adoption of Common Core.” The text of the press statement barely mentioned education at all, while repeatedly blasting Florida for allegedly implementing “racially discriminatory anti-voter laws” this year in furtherance of the state’s “raw history of voter suppression.” Bucking widespread opposition to Common Core among grassroots conservatives in the state, former Gov. Jeb Bush championed the Common Core standards last week at a National Press Club event in Washington, D.C. “The fight about Common Core is political,” Bush argued. “Meanwhile, back at the ranch, we have huge swaths of the next generation of Americans that can’t calculate math. They can’t read. Their expectations in their own lives are way too low. And we’re not going to be able to sustain this extraordinarily exceptional country unless we challenge every basic assumption on how we do things.” Bush claimed Florida Gov. Rick Scott agreed with him on implementing Common Core. Apparently, Bush was mistaken.

Georgia withdraws from Common Core group

Georgia withdraws from Common Core group

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ATLANTA — Georgia has withdrawn from a consortium tasked with creating standardized tests aligned with Common Core curriculum, state officials announced Monday.

The state withdrew from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers mainly because of the cost associated with administering the tests, State School Superintendent John Barge said.

Based on the number of students in grades three through eight who took Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests in 2012, administering the consortium’s math, reading and writing tests would cost Georgia about $27.5 million.

The figure eclipses the statewide K-12 assessment budget of $25 million — which includes advanced placement tests for low-income students and English as a second language testing, Barge said.

“That is a significant cost increase,” Barge said, “It’s just priced us out of the game.”

Common Core curriculum has been a touchy issue, with some lawmakers and educators saying the set of national standards is a path to a federal takeover of state education systems. Barge said Monday that he hopes Georgia’s pulling out of the consortium doesn’t add fuel to that debate.

“Folks need to know that as we move forward, whatever assessment we end up with, they’ll be more rigorous than what we currently administer, and they’ll be aligned with our standards,” he said. “Our expectations for students will be increasing.”

The partnership announced Monday that computerized reading, writing and mathematics tests are estimated to cost $29.50 per student. The figure is nearly three times higher than what the state currently spends per student on standardized tests, Barge said.

“Georgia can create an equally rigorous measurement without the high costs associated with this particular test,” Republican Gov. Nathan Deal said in a statement. “Just as we do in all other branches of state government, we can create better value for taxpayers while maintaining the same level of quality.”

The state doesn’t have the technological infrastructure to administer completely computerized tests in 2014, Barge said, adding that administering a paper version of the tests was expected to increase the price by $3 to $4 per student.

Georgia was one of 22 states that joined the consortium with the intent of administering new tests during the 2014-15 school year, State Department of Education spokesman Matt Cardoza said in a release. In early July, Oklahoma education officials announced they were pulling out of the partnership in part because of higher costs associated with administering the tests.

Of the states participating in the consortium, Georgia spends the least on standardized testing, partnership spokesman Chad Colby said.

“For some states in the consortium, they’ll actually save money by staying in PARCC,” Colby said, adding that Maryland spends about $61 per student on standardized tests. He added that most other states in the consortium already are spending within $3 of $4 of the amount the partnership plans to charge for the assessments.

The Georgia Department of Education is planning to work with educators from throughout the state to craft an independent test that is aligned with Georgia’s English and math standards, Cardoza said in a statement.

Creating the tests in Georgia will ensure that state education officials maintain control over state standards, Cardoza said, adding that using the general assessment would have kept state officials from being able to adjust Georgia’s standards if teachers said revisions were necessary.

State education officials will look to the University System of Georgia and the Technical College System of Georgia for help in creating the tests, Barge said.

“They are stakeholders with a vested interest [in] that we are sending them students who are ready for college,” he said. “They need to be at the table with us.”

The tests likely will be similar to the partnership tests but will include more constructive responses and fewer multiple choice questions, Barge said.

Even with an independent test, the state likely will pay more for standardized assessments because Georgia currently is paying a vendor for CRCT tests based on a contract that was negotiated in 2006.




Indiana is the latest state to withdraw from a national Common Core testing coalition, leaving state officials to reconsider the national standards and tests.

According to EAGNews.org, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) announced Monday that his state will no longer participate in Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC), and will officially withdraw, effective August 12th.

“It is the right and responsibility of the state to make independent, fiscally responsible decisions regarding standards and assessments for the good of all the people of Indiana,” Pence said in a statement.

By law, Indiana may only withdraw from PARCC if the current state superintendent agrees with the decision. A state Department of Education spokesperson has said that superintendent Glenda Ritz (D) agrees with Pence’s decision.

Heartland.org reports that Indiana may re-join PARCC if its state board of education opts to stay with Common Core. A 2013 law mandates that a decision be made by July 2014 following a statewide review.

The new state law calls for a thorough review of the Common Core standards. They were adopted in 2010 under the guidance of former state superintendent Tony Bennett. Kindergarten and first grade teachers are already teaching the Common Core standards, and second grade teachers were slated to switch to Common Core in 2013-2014 school year. The Indiana Department of Education, however, has asked that second graders continue with the old standards.

Indiana children will continue to use state ISTEP+ tests for 2013-2014, and onward if the state board retains Indiana standards. In that case, said Claire Fiddian-Green, Pence’s special assistant for education, the ISTEP+ would likely be revised “to meet college- and career-ready requirements.”

In July, Georgia and Oklahoma announced that they would withdraw from the Common Core tests as well. In order to keep its federal grant that provides all its operating funds, PARCC must keep at least 15 states in the coalition. With Indiana dropping out, PARCC now has 17 participants. The other national testing group, Smarter Balanced, has 24 participants.

source: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/08/03/Indiana-Drops-Common-Core-Tests